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Drizzled with the best lemon glaze, these Lemon Poppyseed Bars are like summer in dessert form. Light, bright, chewy, with the perfect amount of lemon tartness, these bars are a standout dessert!

45 degree angle of finished lemon poppyseed bars

My Mom is a lover of all things lemon. She has passed that along to me, I just can’t get enough of that sweet pucker in dessert form.

I knew I wanted to make a bar out of one of my favorite summer flavors but I wanted to make something different and unexpected. 

And, BOOM, these Lemon Poppyseed Bars were born. With a slight crunch from the poppy seeds and a killer lemon glaze, these bars are far from boring.

They have become somewhat of a tradition around the summer months for our family. Even Lily can’t get enough of these lemon bars, toddler approved… you know this recipe is a keeper!

If you are a fan of lemon and want to make an unexpected dessert then look no further than these Lemon Poppyseed Bars!

Some of our other favorite bar recipes include: Cherry Cheesecake Bars, Blueberry Bars, and Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars.

stack shot of cut lemon poppyseed bars

WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS:

  • Pantry staple ingredients make this recipe come together quickly.
  • This recipe can be easily doubled to feed more people.
  • A classic flavor combination makes this a crowd-pleasing dessert.

INGREDIENTS NEEDED (FULL RECIPE BELOW):

Unsalted Butter
Light brown sugar
Granulated Sugar
Eggs
Lemon zest
Lemon juice, freshly squeezed
Vanilla extract
All-purpose flour
Poppyseeds
Baking powder
Fine sea salt
Powdered sugar

ingredients needed to make lemon poppyseed bars

HOW TO MAKE LEMON POPPYSEED BARS:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 9×9 baking dish with parchment paper, set aside.
  2. In a large bowl with an electric hand mixer, cream the butter with the brown sugar and granulated sugar for 3 minutes. 
  3. Add the eggs one at a time, and mix it until combined. Add the lemon zest, lemon juice, and vanilla, mix until combined. 
  4. Add the flour, poppy seeds, baking powder, and salt. Mix until just combined with no dry streaks, do not overmix.
  5. Press the dough into the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Bake for 20-25 minutes until browned along the edges and top does not appear moist. A toothpick inserted into the center should come out clean.
  6. Let the bars cool on the counter for 30 minutes.
  7. While the bars are cooling, make the glaze by whisking together the powdered sugar, lemon juice, and lemon zest until smooth. You want the glaze to be thick yet pourable, start with 1 tablespoon lemon juice and add from there.
  8. Pour the glaze on top of the bars. With an offset spatula smooth the glaze all over the top of the bars. Let them cool completely in the pan.
  9. Lift out the bars by the parchment paper. Cut into bars and serve.

step by step photos showing how to make lemon poppyseed bars

HOW TART ARE THESE LEMON BARS?

These bars are so good, not overly sweet but that glaze is killer and what really sets them off.

You get just that hint of lemon pucker when you first bite them but it’s not overwhelming.

SO GOOD, they are light and easy to eat more than one at a sitting. 

DO I HAVE TO USE LEMON?

If you are not a fan of lemon but still want to make similar bars, you can substitute any other citrus fruits. I have found citrus and poppyseed just work perfectly together.

Instead of lemon juice, you can use orange, grapefruit, or lime juice. Make sure the citrus juice is always freshly squeezed for optimal taste. If you use orange, you will not get any pucker but a more sweet bar.

CAN I GLAZE WITH ANY OTHER FLAVORS?

Absolutely!

We have made glazes out of pureed strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries. All of these berries pair nicely with lemon.

This is truly a fantastic base recipe to work off of to add your own custom touches.

CAN I MAKE THIS IN A 9X13 PAN?

Yes, to feed a larger crowd, this recipe can be made in a 9×13 pan.

Just double the ingredients and spread the batter into a lined 9×13 pan. Baking time may vary but the bars are done when the edges are slightly golden brown, the center appears dry, and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out mostly clean.

overhead 45 degree angle of finished lemon poppyseed bars

HOW TO STORE:

Store at room temperature in an air-tight container for up to 4 days.

These can be frozen for up to three months.

If they are cut into bars, I suggest freezing them first on a sheet tray until frozen solid. Then add them to a freezer-safe container with pieces of wax paper between the layers.

TIPS AND TRICKS:

  • They can easily be doubled to feed a larger crowd.
  • Use lime juice, orange juice, or grapefruit juice in place of the lemon for a twist.
  • Do not skip the glaze, it sends these bars over the top delicious.
  • Add berry puree to the glaze for a lemon berry bar.
  • These can be frozen, see my tips above on that.

handheld bite shot of lemon poppyseed bars

Looking for the perfect unexpected summer dessert? Then these Lemon Poppyseed Bars should be on your baking menu STAT. Super easy, tasty, and bursting with lemon goodness.

If you like this recipe you might also like:

If you’ve tried these LEMON POPPYSEED BARS let me know in the comments how it turned out! You can follow me over on PINTEREST, INSTAGRAM OR FACEBOOK to find some more of our mouthwatering recipes!

This Silly Girls Kitchen Logo
4.84 from 6 votes

Lemon Poppyseed Bars

Author Dana at ThisSillyGirlsKitchen.com
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 25 minutes
Drizzled with the best lemon glaze, these Lemon Poppyseed Bars are like summer in dessert form. Light, bright, chewy, with the perfect amount of lemon tartness, these bars are a standout dessert!
Servings 9 servings

Ingredients
  

For the bars:

For the glaze:

Instructions

For the bars:

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 9×9 baking dish with parchment paper, set aside.
  • In a large bowl with an electric hand mixer, cream the butter with the brown sugar and granulated sugar for 3 minutes.
  • Add the eggs one at a time, and mix it until combined. Add the lemon zest, lemon juice, and vanilla, mix until combined.
  • Add the flour, poppy seeds, baking powder, and salt. Mix until just combined with no dry streaks, do not overmix.
  • Press the dough into the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Bake for 20-25 minutes until browned along the edges and top does not appear moist. A toothpick inserted into the center should come out clean.
  • Let the bars cool on the counter for 30 minutes.

For the glaze:

  • While the bars are cooling, make the glaze by whisking together the powdered sugar, lemon juice, and lemon zest until smooth. You want the glaze to be thick yet pourable, start with 1 tablespoon lemon juice and add from there.
  • Pour the glaze on top of the bars. With an offset spatula smooth the glaze all over the top of the bars. Let them cool completely in the pan.
  • Lift out the bars by the parchment paper. Cut into bars and serve.

Notes

  • They can easily be doubled to feed a larger crowd.
  • Use lime juice, orange juice, or grapefruit juice in place of the lemon for a twist.
  • Do not skip the glaze, it sends these bars over the top delicious.
  • Add berry puree to the glaze for a lemon berry bar.
  • These can be frozen, see my tips above on that.
  • They can easily be doubled to feed a larger crowd.
  • Use lime juice, orange juice, or grapefruit juice in place of the lemon for a twist.
  • Do not skip the glaze, it sends these bars over the top delicious.
  • Add berry puree to the glaze for a lemon berry bar.
  • These can be frozen, see my tips above on that.

Nutrition

Calories: 316kcal | Carbohydrates: 51g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.4g | Cholesterol: 63mg | Sodium: 21mg | Potassium: 71mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 37g | Vitamin A: 368IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 34mg | Iron: 1mg
Nutrition Disclaimer

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4.84 from 6 votes (5 ratings without comment)

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2 Comments

  1. 4 stars
    how much baking powder?

  2. 1/2 teaspoon, I have updated the recipe, sorry about that!

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